Update: It was part of a fan (https://youtu.be/IZ3NPkHGs94?t=12s) - but I could use some advice. The GPU (Nvidia Geforce GTX 660) now seems to be nonfunctional without that peg in the fan -- after a couple minutes of gaming it shut down the whole PC, which wouldn't boot for a good 45 minutes, only to have ominous disc errors after How critical is this case fan to my PC - is it safe to keep running the PC with the peg out, using the onboard graphics until I replace my GPU? (Considering this http://www.geforce.com/hardware/desktop-gpus/geforce-gtx-950/specifications) (Was after an upgrade for a while, don't worry)
The computer is 3-4 years old, and I'm considering the cost of getting this problematic little fan repaired in a shop, vs. just holding off and saving up for a new PC (or preferably just getting a new graphics card for now)
Hi, let me start off by identifying myself as one of "those" folks with no real business having their hands inside a PC. I'm also typing this from a phone, so I apologize if I am too brief - I will try to provide as much info as I can. My PC is an Alienware x51 (beyond that, not sure). Recently we had some power surge issues that killed my roommate's cpu and caused my pc to act alarmingly strange until turned off - though mine seems to have survived intact and booted up normally now that we have it on a big beefy PSU tower. When we were cleaning the dust out of my pc, we found a black plastic peg; couldn't identify any visible place it could be missing from. (Pic: http://m.imgur.com/8xHDswI ) it was rattling around loose in the case afterwards, so we opened and took it out. Now when the pc boots up, it briefly makes a high pitched metallic wooshing sound not typical for any of its fans. I am worried it's the gpu, and afraid to fire up any games in case it spins up and breaks something. The graphics card and such are very difficult to access though, due to the way this microtower is built - prebuilt with heavily screwed-together metal partitions that really connect all of its "guts" together in such a way that to access the gpu would mean pulling just about everything out of the machine...which is quite intimidating to a novice like myself. But because I can't see a place for the plastic peg in the cpu fan (though it looks like the same type of black plastic) I'm wondering if it came from underneath that hard-to-reach bit? If anyone recognizes the peg as a part of something, please let me know! The pc is working for web browsing atm (roommate is on it - hence no pics of the inside for a bit) but if this is something critical that it should be taken to a shop for, I'd rather be on the safe side! Apologies for paragraphing.
Edited by Christina9713, 07 October 2016 - 01:17 AM.